Hello, another from France tonight. Nice design I hope you will agree. This one is from a set of 4, issued in 1954. It show a Nord 2501 Noratlas. What is that you ask. Ok I didn’t know either! Well, it is a 1950s French military transport aircraft intended to replace the older types in service at the end of World War II. Several hundred were produced in a run lasting over a decade, finding a wide variety of uses.

This aircraft gained some fame during the Suez Crisis of 1956, when French paratroopers dropped over the south of Port Said and Port Fouad in Egypt. Its history began four years earlier in 1952 with the unfortunate crash of the first Nord 2501 prototype as it underwent further testing, and on January 9, 1953, the Nord 2501 was baptized the Noratlas by the widow of the pilot killed in the crash.

Despite this setback, 34 planes were built by June 25 1953, and the Armée de l’Air went on to order another 174 planes, for a total of 208.

Best wishes.. Michael